writing off my mobile.. when i saw the lineups i was itching to get a crack at the reds. strong lineup! at the start of the game,ball decisions had to be made. it began with the field ball but after both sides had a feel and reds preferences, whites gave in and used the futsal ball. whites raced off to an early lead as reds were giving away possession. whites were also maintaining a high defensive line with practically the whole team in reds half except for the keeper. the squeezing of space and lack of movement was causing reds to get frustrated. but reds never gave up and coming from 6-1 down to 6-4? sweet placements by boris were unsaveable whilst dogged determination by reza and babs ensured the ball ended in the back of the net despite rajiv's spectacular blocks. however, the difference in teams could be seen in their composure. whites were calm when reds seemed to be on a good comeback. not much shouting and always looking for quick easy passes and making the runs to create space and support. reds however were trying hard to individually create things and while holding on to the ball too long were sometimes closed off quickly. i cant remember the final scoreline..maybe rajiv did keep track although he seemed to have lost some fitness. but rajiv contributed greatly to our defence especially with babs n john attacking down his wing. sadly to report, angelo injured his ankle after a jump to head the ball, landing awkwardly and grimacing in pain. rajiv and him sat out the last 5 minutes.
Team 1: Derian, Sean L, Mark Li, Jessen, Casey, Wilson, Rajiv (Singaporeans) Team 2: Babs, Reza, Brendan, Alex F, Boris, John Simpson, David M (5 from UK, 1 from India, 1 from Hong Kong)
I'll leave it to the 2 team selectors whether that is ok (even if it means both of them on the same team), or they want to agree on the line ups between them (in which case, they are in separate teams as usual).
I have just spoken with Reza & gone through Rajiv's idea above of having S'poreans vs The Rest. Reza doesn't know many of the S'porean players anyway so he is happy to stick with the suggestion as am I. I have played with nearly all the players above & to be fair both teams look good and pretty closely matched. it should be a good close game.
Rajiv do you want to advise on the colors or should we? We will go for Reds if I have a choice with the S'porean team in White.
David T SMSed me at 5.40 pm to ask if he could take my place on the "Singapore" team. I said I had to be there anyway (to pay for the pitch), so I would be playing, but he could rotate with his friends if he wanted. I have only played once over the past two months, so I felt I needed the game. David replied to say he would give it a miss.
David M SMSed me at 6.23 pm to say he had to work late. I called David T and asked if he could play. Of course, his preference was to be on the same side as his friends.
I gave Babs and Reza the option of having either Casey or me. Babs asked why David T couldn't come straight in for David M, but would take Casey, while Reza also took Casey.
At this stage, it would no longer have been Singaporeans v The Rest, and would in fact be a backdoor David T & Friends v The Rest, with which there have been issues.
Entirely coincidentally, at 7.19 pm, before I had a chance to inform him of the change, Casey SMSed me to say he had to withdraw as he had a last-minute meeting to attend. I sent out a mass SMS and Angelo replied to say he was in, which brings us back to:
Whites: Derian, Sean L, Mark Li, Jessen, Wilson, Rajiv, David T (Singaporeans) Reds: Babs, Reza, Brendan, Alex F, Boris, John Simpson, Angelo (5 from UK, 1 from India, 1 from Italy)
Again, if Babs and Reza want to re-do the line ups, they're at liberty to do so.
Brendan pointed out to me yesterday that he was Australian, not British.
I think the scoring went like this (Whites first):
3-0 3-1 6-1 6-4 9-4 9-6 10-6 10-7 12-7
However, at 9-6, the score became 9-7, so that would make the final score 12-8. At the end, Babs mentioned 12-9, but perhaps he was thinking of the Wednesday night game.
Whites scored 6 times from their first 6 attacks. At the other end, Alex had a shot which hit both posts and came out, while Babs hit the cross-bar later on.
Reds had an equal amount of possession - just that when Whites attacked, they were very quick. That comes of David T and his friends being so familiar with each other, an issue we have addressed several times before under the "Line ups" thread.
Despite my moaning about David T's team being together & too strong it is very good to have a challenge like that. It was a frustrating match throughout I think for Reds, but David & his team were as always superb. Great advert on how to play football on these size pitches, superb shape, pass & move, running off the ball, finding space & clinical finishing!
The opposition definitely feel it afterwards & I am happy to report that I have lost half a Kg this morning so thank you David & his team for that! As for the final score, Rajiv your probably right, I had no clue & thought I would chance a 12-9 outcome (I thought my crossbar shot had crossed the line maybe??!).
Also my regards & best wishes to Angelo who seemed in a lot of pain & discomfort at the end. I wish him a speedy recovery!
This is the first time I've played against David's team (plus Rajiv) and they were excellent. Lots of great communication (you dont have to shout) and movement, players always available to receive passes and patience in build up play too.
The 3 quick goals reds conceded made it clear that it would be a very long night if we didnt sort ourselves out and remain disciplined about our positional play. There were patches in the middle of the match where I'd like to think that things were fairly even - by closing down the space in midfield, Whites were having to rely a bit more on high balls up the pitch. But every time Reds built up a bit of momentum, I think we got carried away and lost shape again.
Still, I think Reds can be proud of their performance against an experienced side.